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Android: Netrunner» Forums » General

Subject: just played my first 3 games ever rss

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Rory Gilliland
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great game.

I played as the runner and 2 games as the corp. These guys at a meetup taught me and were pretty thorough.

I have 2 questions which are probably pretty easy to answer.

Out of all the playing I did, I always paid credits to get rid of tracer's and blew all my clicks getting rid of viruses so i never saw them in action.

what is the point of the tracers and the viruses? what do they do?

thanks.
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Count Ringworm
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You just mentioned one of the points- make the runner spend his money avoiding the traces (known as "taxing" the runner). Traces may or may not be very painful, but they can be annoying when you have to spend your credits avoiding them instead of doing what you want to do with the money.

The same idea holds true for viruses. As a runner, I have many things out there with virus tokens on them that can screw up your day as the corp. Sure, you can clear them and set me back a little, but you just spent your whole turn as a corp doing that, and not advancing agendas, placing ice, gaining money, etc

The traces are also where link comes into play. If you find you're playing against a LOT of traces, you may consider boosting your link so it doesn't cost you as much.

Edit- oh, and welcome to the game!
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Austin Norris

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Traces tend to make you spend more money than an efficient breaker would cost to get through the trace. Viruses give the runner good effects and if you clear them you basically give the runner a timewalk/aka extra turn. Basically both ideally will set the opponent further behind if they care about them.
 
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When a Trace initiates (that subroutine on the piece of ICE is not broken, or the Corp plays an Operation that initiates a Trace) it becomes a mini bidding war between the Corp's Trace strength and the Runner's Link strength.

The Trace might say "Trace^3", which means it starts at strength 3. The bid then starts with the Corp who may pay X credits to increase the strength of the Trace by X. If the Corp pays 4 credits, the Trace becomes a Trace^7. Then the bid passes to the Runner.

The Runner needs to match the Trace with their Link strength. Link is found in the upper right hand corner of the runner's identity card (most start with 0, but Kate from the Core Set starts with 1). There are other cards you can install to give you more Link as well, making all Traces easier to combat. So, if you're playing as Kate and your Link starts out at 1, you need to pay 6 Credits in order to buff your Link to match the Corp's Trace^6.

After the bid, if the Corp's Trace is higher than the Runner's Link, the "If the Trace is successful..." text applies. If the Runner matches the Trace or exceeds it, the Trace is unsuccessful and nothing happens.


Viruses do many different things. The most common is Datasucker and Parasite, which are used to lower the strength of ICE, which can be used to either save the Runner money (since they're lowering the ICE strength through Virus tokens instead of using their credits to strengthen their icebreakers) or destroy ICE (Parasite is intalled on a piece of ICE and gets a Virus token at the beginning of the Runner's turn. The ICE has -1 strength for each Virus token on the Parasite. When the ICE's strength meets 0, Parasite then trashes the ICE).

Anarch has the most viruses and gets the most use out of them. Medium gets a token for every successful R&D run and will let you access another card from R&D, letting you dig really deep and potentially get a ton of points in one run. Imp gets two tokens when it's installed and at any point you can use an Imp token to trash a card you access, even if it can't normally be trashed.

There are a ton of Viruses that do different things; some incredibly useful, some situational.

Glad you enjoyed your first few games. Keep running!
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Rory Gilliland
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thanks for this. I only looked at them like costly ways to use my credits and clicks, but because i had never seen one go through, i was wondering what the repercussions were if i just avoided the viruses and the traces...but i guess it depends on the subtext of all the traces and viruses like you mentioned.
 
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Count Ringworm
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yes, it absolutely depends on the individual trace.

For example, take the ICE Caduceus:
ICE: Sentry - Tracer • Rez: 3 • Strength: 3 • Influence: 2
Trace3– If successful, the Corp gains 3.
Trace2– If successful, end the run.

As a runner, say you let the first trace happen. The Corp gained 3 credits, so basically they rezzed the ice for free, or a net gain if it was already rezzed.

Then the next subroutine goes off- beat that trace or the run is ended. Your call as runner if that is worth the credits to beat. If you beat it, you get into their server, and possibly steal an agenda. Or you get into the server and hit a snare, flatlining you, so you decide to save the money, let the trace end the run, and bounce off. That's what makes it fun!

Other ice can tag you with a trace, which could mean nothing, or it could result in you losing your resources, credits (Closed Accounts) or even kill you (Scorched Earth). Getting a feel for what cards your opponent may be using for "tag punishment" is part of the game.

There aren't too many hard and fast rules on when to beat traces. Sometimes giving the corp a few credits or taking a tag is no big deal. But if you're playing against Weyland and you have 3 cards in hand, you probably don't want to get any tags.

Purging viruses as a corp also requires reading the board state and figuring the cost/benefit. If the runner just threw out an Imp, or a datasucker with enough tokens to allow them to get in wherever they want, go ahead and purge. Usually you're safe letting them have a few virus tokens out there and keep playing according to you plan. Purge when you can afford the tempo hit.
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Rory Gilliland
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thanks so much. this helps a lot. I can't wait to get back out there and play a few more games. Playing 3 isn't enough. I need to keep it up so i don't need to think about the rules, and I just know them.
 
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